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Bodies of Inscription: A Cultural History of the Modern Tattoo Community

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Bodies of Inscription: A Cultural History of the Modern Tattoo Community Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Since the 1980s, tattooing has emerged anew in the United States as a widely appealing cultural, artistic, and social form. In Bodies of Inscription Margo DeMello explains how elite tattooists, magazine editors, and leaders of tattoo organizations have downplayed the working-class roots of tattooing in order to make it more palatable for middle-class consumption. She shows how a completely new set of meanings derived primarily from non-Western cultures has been created to give tattoos an exotic, primitive flavor.

Community publications, tattoo conventions, articles in popular magazines, and DeMello’s numerous interviews illustrate the interplay between class, culture, and history that orchestrated a shift from traditional Americana and biker tattoos to new forms using Celtic, tribal, and Japanese images. DeMello’s extensive interviews reveal the divergent yet overlapping communities formed by this class-based, American-style repackaging of the tattoo. After describing how the tattoo has moved from a mark of patriotism or rebellion to a symbol of exploration and status, the author returns to the predominantly middle-class movement that celebrates its skin art as spiritual, poetic, and self-empowering. Recognizing that the term “community” cannot capture the variations and class conflict that continue to thrive within the larger tattoo culture, DeMello finds in the discourse of tattooed people and their artists a new and particular sense of community and explores the unexpected relationship between this discourse and that of other social movements.

This ethnography of tattooing in America makes a substantive contribution to the history of tattooing in addition to relating how communities form around particular traditions and how the traditions themselves change with the introduction of new participants. Bodies of Inscription will have broad appeal and will be enjoyed by readers interested in cultural studies, American studies, sociology, popular culture, and body art.

Synopsis:

"The histories of tattoo traditions presented in this book are fascinating and rich. DeMello has many insights into tattoos' complexity of meaning, brought out in precise ethnographic and historical fashion."--Kathleen Stewart, author of "A Space on the Side of the Road: Cultural Poetics in an "Other" America"

Synopsis:

An ethnography of the tattoo community, tracing the practice’s transformation from a mostly male, working-class phenomenon to one adapted and propagated by a more middle-class movement in the period from the 1970s to the present.

Synopsis:

After describing how the tattoo has moved from a mark of patriotism or rebellion to a symbol of exploration and status, the author returns to the predominantly middle-class movement that celebrates its skin art as spiritual, poetic, and self-empowering. Recognising that the term community" cannot capture the variations and class conflict that continue to thrive within the larger tattoo culture, DeMello finds in the discourse of tattooed people and their artists a new and particular sense of community and explores the unexpected relationship between this discourse and that of other social movements. This ethnography of tattooing in America makes a substantive contribution to the history of tattooing in addition to relating how communities form around particular traditions and how the traditions themselves change with the introduction of new participants. "Bodies of Inscription" will have broad appeal and will be enjoyed by readers interested in cultural studies, American studies, sociology, popular culture, and body art.

Description:

Includes bibliographical references (p. [207]-217) and index.

About the Author

“A fascinating book bursting with penetrating description. DeMello makes a very useful contribution to the literature on these increasingly salient voluntary communities of passion, interest, and identity.”—Gayle Rubin
“The histories of tattoo traditions presented in this book are fascinating and rich. DeMello has many insights into tattoos’ complexity of meaning, brought out in precise ethnographic and historical fashion.”—Kathleen Stewart, author of A Space on the Side of the Road: Cultural Poetics in an “Other” America

Product Details

ISBN:
9780822324676
Author:
DeMello, Margo
Publisher:
Duke University Press
Author:
Rubin, Gayle S.
Author:
DeMello, Margo
Author:
Demello
Location:
Durham, NC :
Subject:
United states
Subject:
Social aspects
Subject:
Anthropology - Cultural
Subject:
Popular Culture
Subject:
Tattoos, Mehndi, & Body Painting
Subject:
Tattooing
Subject:
Popular Culture - General
Subject:
Tattoos, Mehndi, & Body Painting, Etc.
Subject:
Body Art & Tattooing
Subject:
Tattooing -- United States.
Subject:
Tattooing - United States - Social aspects
Subject:
Sociology - General
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade Paper
Series Volume:
97-02
Publication Date:
20000131
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Language:
English
Illustrations:
22 bandw photographs
Pages:
256
Dimensions:
8.81x6.44x.72 in. .87 lbs.

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Related Subjects

» Arts and Entertainment » Art » Body Art and Tattooing
» Arts and Entertainment » Art » Tattooing
» History and Social Science » American Studies » Popular Culture
» History and Social Science » Anthropology » Cultural Anthropology
» History and Social Science » Sociology » General
» Hobbies, Crafts, and Leisure » Crafts » Body Art
» Hobbies, Crafts, and Leisure » Crafts » Locked Case

Bodies of Inscription: A Cultural History of the Modern Tattoo Community New Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$25.25 In Stock
Product details 256 pages Duke University Press - English 9780822324676 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , "The histories of tattoo traditions presented in this book are fascinating and rich. DeMello has many insights into tattoos' complexity of meaning, brought out in precise ethnographic and historical fashion."--Kathleen Stewart, author of "A Space on the Side of the Road: Cultural Poetics in an "Other" America"
"Synopsis" by ,
An ethnography of the tattoo community, tracing the practice’s transformation from a mostly male, working-class phenomenon to one adapted and propagated by a more middle-class movement in the period from the 1970s to the present.
"Synopsis" by , After describing how the tattoo has moved from a mark of patriotism or rebellion to a symbol of exploration and status, the author returns to the predominantly middle-class movement that celebrates its skin art as spiritual, poetic, and self-empowering. Recognising that the term community" cannot capture the variations and class conflict that continue to thrive within the larger tattoo culture, DeMello finds in the discourse of tattooed people and their artists a new and particular sense of community and explores the unexpected relationship between this discourse and that of other social movements. This ethnography of tattooing in America makes a substantive contribution to the history of tattooing in addition to relating how communities form around particular traditions and how the traditions themselves change with the introduction of new participants. "Bodies of Inscription" will have broad appeal and will be enjoyed by readers interested in cultural studies, American studies, sociology, popular culture, and body art.
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